Thursday, December 19, 2013

the joy of sex cooking.

this guy i'm dating has never made breakfast for me in the mornings. i think he just expects me to leave when i wake up. is that a bad sign or is morning breakfast just a cliché?

BREAKFAST IS A GODDAMNED TRAP. may 2012, morning: i woke up in the bed of my newest paramour, cotton-mouthed and irritable, forced to shield my eyes against the blinding sunlight streaming through the uncurtained (fuck it, that's a new word now) window. outside birds chirped, bees hummed, dew glistened, small woodland creatures tapped at the window pane, anxious to come in and set about their day making the bed and tidying up. homeboy wasn't next to me, and i briefly wondered if maybe he was dead before dismissing thoughts of him entirely to luxuriate in the 3,271 threadcount sheets on his massive california king. just as i was settling back in for another nine hours of sleep he burst into the bedroom and purred, "come downstairs when you're ready. i made you breakfast." HOLY FUCKING FUCK. that's some next level shit right there, bro. 1 the fact that this motherfucker even had a downstairs and 2 there's some freshly-prepared breakfast in it!? JACKPOT. this dude just won the mister samantha irby pageant, uncontested. i grabbed the fresh towels he'd laid out (yes) and the new bars of soap he'd left on top of them (hells yes) and went to take a shower in the spotless bathroom he'd obviously cleaned while i was sound asleep in the next room (hells motherfucking yes, also SEX IS EXHAUSTING). when i finlly went downstairs before me was laid a sumptuous spread of blueberry pancakes not from a mix, bacon, freshly-grated hash browns, scrambled eggs, and fancy juice from a goddamned juicer. i was like, this dude totally loves me. i ate that meal radiating the glow of burgeoning love. homeboy dumped me a couple weeks later in a text message a few hours after i banged him. like, his semen hadn't even absorbed into my body yet. (ugh, where does that shit go!? scientists, help!)


easy, basic frittata for easy, basic bitches.

4 eggs
1/4 cup liquid (milk, tomato juice, broth; WORK WITH WHAT YOU GOT, HOOKER)
1/4 tsp dried thyme leaves or herbs of your choice (if this is the kind of dude who stocks "herbs" you can't smoke)
salt and pepper
cup filling (see below)
tsp butter or vegetable oil
filling: okay, so you can use the datenight leftovers or whatever non-moldy shit homeskillet has sitting in his refrigerator or whatever. be resourceful, b. you can use any delicious-sounding combination of meat, seafood, poultry, cheese, vegetables, and cooked pasta/grains.
IMPORTANT: adjust the filling, liquid, seasonings, and pan size proportionally to the number of eggs used. eg, for 2 eggs, use a 6-inch pan; for 6 eggs, an 8-inch pan; for 8 eggs, an 8 to 10-inch pan. filling ingredients should be cooked, not raw. pieces should be cut fairly small and drained well. god, i hope dude has frying pans and shit. ugh just do what you can.

1 beat eggs, liquid, herb and salt and pepper in medium bowl until blended. ADD filling; mix well.
2 heat the butter or oil in a 6- to 8-inch nonstick omelet pan or skillet over medium heat until melted. slowly pour in the egg mixture and cook over low to medium heat until eggs are almost set, about 8 to 10 minutes.
3 remove from heat. so the original recipe says to cover and let stand until eggs are completely set and no visible liquid egg remains, 5 to 10 minutes. but i will die if my tongue touches any soft-ass eggs for real, so i leave the pan uncovered and stick it in a warm oven for a few minutes to firm up. if you know what you're doing (and dude's oven doesn't look grimy and fucked up) you can stick it under the broiler for a second? cut into wedges and eat in his bathroom while you wait for your plan B to work.

do men consider things like cooking ability when deciding to marry? i’m not precisely traditional, but i’m a hell of a cook, and i’d like my guy to see me as wife material. i know i can’t make him want to marry me, but is exposure to my great food (not to be conceited) valuable information in the decision making process?

marriage is a business deal. if being almost-34 has taught me anything, it's that relationships start off being about how you like to watch all the same shit on tv and rapidly devolve into a series of contract negotiations and risky investments. i feel like women are the first to forget that, that you and this dude are forming a mini corporation and shit, that's it not totally about whether or not you microwave hotdogs for dinner every night. at least it shouldn't be, if you're going to get married for real and file taxes and own property or whatever. i am at the age where passersby on the goddamned street are like, "DAMN HO, ARE YOU GOING TO EVER SETTLE DOWN!?" and my response is always, "well gentleman on the bus, i have yet to meet anyone i wouldn't feel nervous giving my ATM pin number to." and that would just give a motherfucker access to a couple thousand dollars, at most. let alone meeting anyone whose debt i'd feel comfortable taking on as my own.

i did an interview recently in which the (MALE, OF COURSE) interviewer asked me what my most attractive quality to a potential lifemate would be. and i said, straight up, "i don't have any fucking debt." and then he sort of laid into me about that answer being the death of romance or whatever. and maybe it is? but i know that in real life the fact that i don't have any student loans makes me way more appealing as someone whose taxes you might want to file jointly with yours than "cooks good." because for sure, who doesn't want to fuck someone who can roll out of bed and hook up some falafels and shit? but you can't just go into business with every bitch with a mean grilled cheese game. oh, who am i kidding. MEN LOVE CAKE AND WILL TOTALLY MARRY YOU IF YOU CAN MAKE ONE.

moist devil's food cake
(adapted from the homie martha stewart)

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, plus more for pans
3/4 cup dutch-process cocoa powder, plus more for pans
1/2 cup boiling water
2 1/4 cups sugar
1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
3 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk

chocolate frosting (make this ahead of time):
24 ounces nestle semisweet chocolate morsels
4 cups whipping cream
1 tsp light corn syrup

okay boo, this is really easy. place chocolate morsels and cream in a heavy saucepan. cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a rubber spatula, until combined and thickened, between 20 and 25 minutes. increase the heat to medium low; cook, stirring, 3 minutes more. remove pan from heat. stir in the corn syrup then transfer frosting to a large metal bowl. chill until cool enough to spread, about 2 hours, checking and stirring every 15 to 20 minutes. use immediately.

1 preheat oven to 350 degrees. arrange two racks in center of oven. butter three 8-by-2-inch round cake pans; line bottoms with parchment. dust bottoms and sides of pans with cocoa powder; tap out any excess. sift cocoa into a medium bowl, and whisk in boiling water. set aside to cool.
2 in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter on low speed until light and fluffy. (i assume you have these things, with all this banging ass food you be making) gradually beat in sugar until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down sides twice. beat in vanilla. drizzle in eggs, a little at a time, beating between each addition until the batter is no longer slick, scraping down the sides twice.
3 in a large bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, and salt. whisk milk into reserved cocoa mixture. with mixer on low speed, alternately add flour and cocoa mixtures to the batter, a little of each at a time, starting and ending with flour mixture. this shit seems tedious, but i do it. martha knows best.
4 divide batter evenly among the three prepared pans. bake until a cake tester inserted into center of each layer comes out clean, 35 to 45 minutes, rotating the pans for even baking. transfer layers to wire racks; let cool, 15 minutes. turn out cakes, and return to racks, tops up, until completely cool.
5 remove parchment from bottoms of cakes. reserve the prettiest layer for the top. place one cake layer on a serving platter; spread 1 1/2 cups chocolate frosting over the top. add the second cake layer, and spread with another 1 1/2 cups frosting. top with third cake layer. cover outside of cake with the remaining 3 cups frosting. eat while listening to your future wedding bells clanging in the distance.

*pet peeve, sidenote, whatever: store it covered on the counter, under a glass dome or in plastic wrap so the shit doesn't dry out. this will keep well for a few days. refrigerated cake is the grossest.

my boyfriend can cook and i can’t. this just feels wrong. i mean, i love eating, i just couldn’t make a decent meal to save my life. is this a horrible girlfriend quality? how do i make up for this?

what on earth does "i can't cook" mean? because for real, if you can read you can fucking cook. I REFUSE TO ACCEPT THIS. so let's make something so easy a monkey could do it. people who say that can't cook shouldn't cook meat or any real sort of meal their first time trying to make some shit for another human you want to love you afterward, so how about a nice hot dip? ps, suck his dick more. GIRLFRIEND OF THE YEAR.

warm goat cheese dip with artichokes and roasted tomatoes
(adapted from sugar and grace) 

1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved

1 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
10 oz goat cheese
4 oz cream cheese
1/3 cup artichoke hearts, drained
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan (optional)

1 preheat oven to 400. spread halved tomatoes on the bottom of a glass baking dish, and drizzle with the olive oil. sprinkle with 1/8 tsp each salt and pepper, and toss with your hands until the oil is distributed. place in hot oven and roast until tomatoes are blistered and bubbling and slightly brown along the edges. remove from oven and, while hot, drizzle balsamic vinegar over the tomatoes. mix with a spoon, and set aside to cool.
2 in a food processor put the cheeses, the drained artichoke hearts, and the rest of the salt and pepper. (or mix by hand if you don't have a food processor, because what kind of non-cooking bitch has a motherfucking mini prep!?) blend for a few seconds until the mixture is mostly smooth and has taken on a whipped appearance. a few chunks here and there is okay. spoon the cheese mixture into an oven-safe bowl.
3 when tomatoes are cool enough to handle, remove them to a large cutting board and coarsely chop. spread a layer of the tomatoes over the cheese mixture, and top with freshly grated parmesan. return the bowl to the oven for 10-15 minutes until cheese is bubbly. serve with flatbread, toasted baguette, fancy crackers, whatever you got. or just eat it out of the pan. no need to be fancy.

what do you think is the homemade food weakness for men?

intricate, labor-intensive recipes are wasted on most dudes, as many of them have the refined palette of your average four-year old. couple that with a general disinterest in listening to you describe how you spent an entire afternoon perfecting the water bath you made for the cheesecake he wolfed down in two bites without tasting it, and you will find yourself sobbing over the remnants of the most beautifully-risen soufflé ever produced outside of the French laundry's test kitchen as your manfriend farts on the couch with a bag of chips because even though he demolished your hard work his ass is somehow still fucking hungry.

FUCK ALL DAT. okay so yes, there are actual dudes who will appreciate that you painted delicate layers of phyllo dough with clarified butter after shelling and grinding pistachios to make homemade baklava. there are nice men who frequent nice restaurants who understand how much work it was for you to break down that rack of lamb, and there are men who would be perfectly satisfied to eat shake and bake every single night until they die in their recliners, bathed in the blue light of the television. aka 99.9% of them. don't waste your time.

frito pie, for motherfuckers who don't appreciate nice shit.

1 large bag of fritos original corn chips
1 15 oz can of chili with beef (with or without beans), heated
1 8 oz bag of shredded cheddar cheese
NECESSARY: chopped onion, tomatoes, lettuce, jalapeños, and/or sour cream

1 in an oven-safe serving dish, pour in the fritos and spread evenly. stop eating the crumbs for a minute, piggy.

2 heat chili and pour evenly over corn chips. add additional ingredients like onion, tomato, lettuce, and jalapeño as desired. (the original recipe says these things are optional. i wholly disagree, because vitamins).
3 sprinkle cheese all over and place in a preheated 350 degree oven until the cheese is a little melted. serve immediately, with a giant dollop of sour cream on top.

don't front. i likes me a linen napkin just as much as the next guy, but I WOULD EAT THE SHIT OUT OF THIS.

help! i want to thank this awesome guy by cooking him his favorite meal: steak. i’m a chicken/fish kinda gal and know nothing about beef. what is a good cut of meat that is hard to screw up? rare, medium-rare, medium? how do i know?

i bristle at this whole "i'm a girl! i don't know anything about meats!" business. it's so gross and counterproductive. okay, so a steak is basically any piece of meat that falls under the category of "fast-cooking" cuts, and the difference between a steak and a roast essentially comes down to size. because size matters, ahem. the ribeye is one of the easiest cuts to pan sear, especially since it's so fatty that on the grill you run the risk of the shit exploding into a fireball in your gorgeous face. you need some fat on it, because the fat is where that super rich beef flavor comes from. so when you're at the butcher remember that the more marbling there is, the better.

(adapted from the pioneer woman)

2 pieces (about 8 oz each) ribeye steak, FROM A BUTCHER (come on, now)
1 tbsp lawry's seasoning salt
3 tbsp lemon pepper seasoning
1 tsp kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter

1 mix the seasonings all together in a small bowl to create a rub and massage into your steaks. really work that shit in there.
2 bring a skillet to a medium heat and add olive oil and butter. get them nice and hot until the butter is beginning to brown. with tongs, set the steak right onto the sizzling butter/oil mixture.
3 cook for about 2 minutes on the first side and then flip and turn the heat down to a medium-low to finish off the cooking. cooking it for about 2 1/2 minutes on the second side will result in a medium-rare piece of meat. alter your cooking time a little to achieve a steak that is less pink in the center. let steak rest for a couple minutes before picking it up with your bare hands and gnawing at it with your teeth, blood and gristle splattering your bare chest and dripping from your chin. like a man.

my boyfriend loves to cook, but his food tastes terrible. should i tell him?

gentlemen, A SUREFIRE WAY TO GET THE PANTIES: cook your loverperson a meal that doesn't make her vomit. i'm not even playing. if your woman sees you preparing a meal with groceries she didn't have to buy using a recipe she didn't have to give you, she will fuck you with the lights on the minute you finish loading the dishwasher. if a dude cooks some shit for me and i don't die i'm on the phone that night or early the next morning like, "WOW O WOW JESSIE HE FRIED ME SOME CHICKENNNN." and jessie will already know that my call was made while standing awkwardly in dude's kitchen trying to find some postcoital snacks not wearing any pants, because if a man makes me chicken and has more than four books on his shelves then sex is being had, sister.

(adapted from my mama)

2-3 lbs frying chickens, hacked into manageable pieces
2 cups buttermilk
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp lawry's seasoned salt (or to taste)
1 tsp black pepper, freshly ground (or to taste)
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp garlic powder, if you want
1/4 tsp onion powder, if you want
vegetable oil (for frying)

1 wash chicken pieces thoroughly and pat dry, then place them in a long, shallow glass baking dish.
2 pour the buttermilk over the chicken, cover and refrigerate for a least 4 hours, turning once or twice. in a clean plastic or brown paper bag combine the flour, salt, pepper, paprika, and, if desired, the garlic and onion powders. helpful hint: DESIRE THAT SHIT.
3 drain the chicken and place two or three pieces in the bag and shake well to coat evenly. repeat until all chicken has been coated with seasoned flour mixture. 
4 in a large, heavy skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat until hot, but not smoking. add chicken (in batches if necessary) and brown on all sides, about three minutes per side. place browned chicken on a warm platter until all pieces are cooked.
5 when all the chicken pieces are browned, crowd them into the skillet, turn heat to medium-low, cover and cook, turning occasionally, until tender, about 35-40 minutes.
6 remove cover, turn heat to medium-high and cook six to eight minutes more or until skin is crispy.

              Thursday, December 12, 2013

              christmas is bullshit.

              WAIT DON'T KILL YOURSELF YET. save that economy-sized bottle of extra strength advil for until after you've scrolled through all of the 1,743 photos that bitch you hate from high school posts of her hallmark fucking christmas. jesus fuck, the holidays are so fucking terrible. if it isn't bitches stabbing each other in the aisles at wal-mart over the shiny plastic jesus that is the new playstation, it's an endless loop of commercials that remind you that YOU ARE FOREVER ALONE and that NO ONE WILL EVER LOVE YOU. as usual, my mailbox is full of the kinds of cheerful letters i can't believe actual humans sit down and actually write. fuck i gotta stop telling people where the fuck i live.

              dear friends and jerks i wish would die,
              the leaves are off the trees and the cold has hunkered down around us and so it will be for the next two or three months. it is always these times that bring out the seething hatred and soul-deadening regret. these thoughts begin as intimate and personal yet they should not stay that way. you need to share in the memories for it is your lives that make me feel terrible about my own. together we are forming a great tapestry of which this past year is yet another of the colorful threads, although my life tapestry has worn considerably thin between the legs.

              last january started cold and sunny, but the glow from the christmas holidays was still upon me. i was up early to greet the new year with a nearly insurmountable loathing. as you know by now, the bright lights and colors of new year's eve celebrations have long since given way to spending weeks on end crying softly in the shower. i prefer to spend the last night of each year at home with my cat and a good porn i can watch on my phone. we'll talk, laugh, cry a little and wonder where the fuck our blessings goddamn went. anyway, the new year did dawn bright and promising and continued into spring much that way. business, for the most part, has been good and now that helen has grown into such a beautiful young cat i recognized that she was blossoming into adulthood as surely as the new buds on the leaves of our backyard trees. i could hardly believe she would graduate from doing absolutely nothing, all the goddamn time!

              our summer bitching about the heat while lying directly in front of the air conditioner was a highlight. it was good to see almost no one, due to the nearly-crippling social anxiety we recently developed. you get all those boys together and it's quite exciting…and loud! we enjoyed seeing all two people who came over to the crib, even if they did wear us out with their constant energy. we should certainly acknowledge helen's new position with the sleeping and eating firm in chicago. she's apparently been quite a sassy little dirtbag who sneezes all over my clean fucking laundry. they've given her diet cat food and a nice bonus of more diet cat food this fall. i'm proud, but hope she doesn't critique my inability to regularly change the brita filter too harshly.

              as i write this i realize once again how god is a lie and humans are mostly terrible. life continues to have its "ups and downs," but overall there is a great deal to be grateful for, like potato chips that magically taste like buffalo wings. we see again the truth that even in dealing with adversity we grow. the important things are still netflix, forgiveness, and al pastor tacos. as we celebrate another christmas and another year i know that we all hold dear in our hearts the memories and the petty, soul-killing minutiae of each endless motherfucking day. thank you dear ones for allowing me to reminisce and contemplate suicide when i realize how bleak my outlook is in comparison. may we continue to savor each breath we take while actively praying for death to come for us in our sleep.

              or maybe that's just me. our hatred and vitriolic bile,
              samantha and helen keller.

              remember how we got through this last year? i want to try again. RENEGADE HOLIDAY SURVIVAL GUIDE, GANGSTER STYLE. 

              1 let's eat some shit. my favorite holiday recipes to sadly eat alone in my apartment come courtesy of the homie martha stewart, who really knows how to raise a bitch's spirits on a cold winter's night. unfortunately for life, i am still gluten- and dairy-free, which means i have to adjust my usual holiday gorging to reflect my newfound commitment to emotional torture. I AM AN EATER OF FEELINGS, UNIVERSE. throw me a fucking bone already. preferably one with some meat on it.

              pepper crusted beef tenderloin.

              first get this: 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns, crushed
              some coarse salt
              2 teaspoons sugar
              1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
              1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
              1 center-cut beef tenderloin (about 2 1/2 pounds)

              then do this: 
              1st preheat oven to 400 degrees. combine peppercorns, 1 tablespoon salt, the sugar, and red-pepper flakes. rub all over tenderloin to coat. let stand at room temperature for 1 hour.

              2nd heat a large ovenproof skillet over high heat until almost smoking. add oil and brown the meat, 1 to 2 minutes per side. transfer skillet to oven, and roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part reaches 120 degrees, maybe 16 minutes? remove from oven, and let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.

              grainy mustard aioli.

              first get this: 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
              1 large egg yolk
              2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
              coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
              1/2 cup olive oil
              2 tablespoons grainy mustard
              2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
              1 tablespoon water, plus more if needed

              then do this.
              1st whisk together dijon mustard, egg yolk, lemon juice, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in a bowl. pour in oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until emulsified and thick. whisk in grainy mustard, horseradish, and water. (thin with more water if too thick.)

              listen. the only courses worth bothering with are meat and dessert. and the only gluten- and dairy-free desserts worth eating are ciao bella dark chocolate sorbet and good quality macarons. you can just holler at whole foods to get your sorbet on; the process of putting together those dainty french almond pastries is arduous and frustrating and godspeed if you attempt to do it in your ill-equipped, regular person kitchen. i have, literally, all of the tools: pastry bags and mandolines and sifters and funnels, and i will never yes i mean never attempt to make my own macarons ever. MAKING THAT SHIT IS HARD AND IMPRACTICAL. PREPARE TO CRY AND SLAM SHIT ALL AROUND YOUR KITCHEN. better yet, this is precisely what the internet is for. buy them shits online and fucking relax.

              2 give in and watch all that christmas miracle garbage. the commercials make me want to hurl myself off the nearest building, for real. there's one this year, for some shopping mall jeweler i can't recall right now, that features a young black couple kissing the kind of kiss that NO ONE EVER FUCKING KISSES: this dry-ass, lips barely touching no tongue no saliva no groping virgin mary kiss, while her grandparents or whatever sit on an adjacent couch admiring the charm bracelet he bought her. i can't articulate why, but that shit makes me want to cut the top of my head off and pull my brain out and stomp on it. it's just so weird and uncomfortable and i cannot imagine my grandmother insinuating that i'm about to give up the pussy right there under the tree because this birdchested lame got me a hundred dollar bracelet with fake rubies in it. NO MA'AM.

              don't get me wrong, i would suck a d for a decent present. ESPECIALLY IF THAT SHIT WAS HELLA THOUGHTFUL. shit, get me some papa john's giftcards and a starbucks and i'll make you a sandwich and give you a handjob (if you let me keep the tv on). but whoever comes up with these commercials is going to have to give us a fucking break. every single one makes my eyes roll so fucking hard that i nearly collapse in a frothing hate seizure as soon as i hear that twinkling music, ugh. speaking of television, come over so we can snuggle in my bed and cry through some made for oxygen christmas shit. it's cathartic, sister, and impossible to resist. plus how will you know what happened to all of your favorite 90s stars?! the other night i watched "christmas in conway" on the hallmark channel and was like OH SHIT, ANDY GARCIA WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM I LOVE THAT DUDE. doesn't that sound like a jam?! besides, if all else fails we can watch dmx singing "rudolph the red-nosed reindeer" 437 times on youtube. WIN-WIN.

              3 buy yourself something really fucking cool. I ALWAYS KNOW WHAT I WANT. look, regular motherfuckers are not going to buy my tom ford lipsticks. i don't need to listen to you chastise me for spending $60 on a diptyque candle, i really don't. i also don't care how you feel about my overpriced snow boots or this stupid laptop i have to buy because i just trashed my other one. i have to have my oyin handmade hair creams and my emily jayne skin butters and that one dress from monif c and those new frames from see that i am obsessed with. so i'ma buy those things for my star player and place them gently in a manger and cover myself in frankincense oil and that will be the end of that, and i won't catch an attitude when you re-gift me those gloves your mom got from the kardashian kollection at sears because i will be totally satisfied with the fancy shit i already bought.

              4 volunteer, you selfish bitch. i already signed up to do some soup kitchen work and yes i am actively dreading it but SO WHAT. i will put on a happy face and show up early and once the organizers figure out that i am not actually homeless (these pajamaclothes can be deceiving) i am going to serve the shit out of some soup and probably hit on a couple of winos and feel like a good person for an afternoon. which is plenty.

              5 go to one party. don't do it if your nasty ass is just going to scowl in the corner with your cup of eggnog the whole night, but if you can temper the grinch for long enough to try to trap some unsuspecting party guest under a shriveled clump of mistletoe GO DO THAT. i fucking hate parties, man. especially in the winter, when whatever work you've done to make yourself presentable is immediately undone by the motherfucking ice and snow. WHAT NICE SHOES. like, i can't even fucking hang, all that salt and snow crusting the hem of my one pair of party pants before i even make it to the train. somebody buy me a goddamned subaru for christmas, please.  

              anyway, sometimes it's nice to see people. especially people who spring for catering and a decent minibar. and no one will get mad if you want to leave after half an hour awkwardly hovering next to the buffet because everybody knows that guilt trips are not christ-like. holiday parties are easy because you know all the songs and there's probably some sort of white elephant gift exchange and those can be pretty hilarious, PLUS EGG NOG. 

              6 take a facebook break. i'm telling you, that one bitch you hate is totally about to pretend all over your newsfeed that she has the perfect little family and that those hallmark-quality photographs are totally not staged. if everyone posted pictures of their kids vomiting on santa and their maxed-out credit card bills stuffed to overflow with their overcompensation, i would be like, "to the internet, friends! let's go feel haughty and superior!" BUT THEY DON'T. nope, these assholes want you to believe that that brand new xbox isn't going to get them fucking evicted, and f them forever. i can't be paying for the thai food i had to walk through a blizzard to get with laundry quarters and also looking at your land rover with the christmas bow on top. i will die for real. 

              so no more comparing your behind the scenes to everybody else's highlight reel. which is super fucking important to remember during the holidays, which is the loneliest time of the year (fact) especially if your mom is dead or your kid is hurt or your ex-best friend got highlights that really bring out her eyes and she looks totally fantastic. go to the movies, homie. read all of those old new yorkers you let pile up next to the toilet. check some shit out of the library, catch up on all the shit you need to watch on netflix, call a bitch you haven't seen in a while and take her out for a drink: whatever you gotta do that isn't "sitting home staring wistfully at your twitter timeline" is what you need to be doing. second week of january? dip a toe in, make sure all those engagement photos are safely put away in those albums you'll only see if you are hardcore stalking a bitch, then start posting buzzfeed listicles again like your very life depends on that shit.

              7 MAKE A DETAILED PLAN.
              here's mine:

              12/23 working all day, dreaming about snacks.
              12/24 working 730-12, then probably crying. soup kitchen work. party at akilah's at 7 and i don't have shit to wear but i am going anyway and avoiding all cameras.
              12/25 wearing my pajamas to laura's place so we can eat an assortment of dips and watch elf, contemplating suicide but resisting because CAT.
              12/26 working all day, disgustingly picking through everyone's gross leftovers secretly in the breakroom when i think no one is watching, shitting later.
              12/27 another full goddamned day of work?! okay, fine. better than lying next to the humidifier reading gone girl for the third consecutive time hoping to be murdered but not really. um, spoiler alert.

              bah humbug. this is the most miserable time of the year. downtown is crawling with old broads lugging bags of uggs and victoria's secret panties around and i hate it. it's pointless to get a tree so i haven't bought one, yet putting a string of lights on my bookcase is thoroughly depressing. christmas muzak is ubiquitous, not to mention horrible. we'll be cool when shit gets back to normal tho, come january 17th or thereabouts. until then, fuck it. eat whatever the hell you want and watch "a nanny for christmas" on lifetime. HOLY SHIT, WHAT UP DEAN CAIN.

              give my book to someone you love, hooker.

              Friday, December 6, 2013

              we need to get our goddamned shit together.

              last monday my apartment flooded. FROM ABOVE, which was really an extra special kind of a treat. so the worst part wasn't the floor above collapsing into my living space. it also wasn't the hours i had to spend throwing out most of my belongings because the asshole who lives above me fell asleep with the shower running. it wasn't even the finding out that he's broke and hasn't paid rent in months and the only way to recover any damages would be to sue him for the handful of starburst in his threadbare hoodie pocket. no, the worst motherfucking part of this whole nightmarish ordeal was shoving the cat into a pillowcase that she would not stop trying to chew and claw her way out of while i ran up and down the stairs trying to find the maintenance dude only to have him tell me there was "nothing he could legally do." it was like carrying a bag of pissed off coyotes, man. coyotes who won't stop yowling at an ear-splitting volume while shitting themselves even though you are asking them in your calmest end of the world voice to settle it the fuck down already. this counterproductive bitch couldn't get it through her tiny brain that without the safety of that standard size soft cotton jersey she would drown a bitter old spinster because there currently are no working arks on the north side of chicago.

              and i know what you're thinking: good thing you kept up the payments on that renter's insurance you were savvy enough to purchase, responsible grown up person! well, um, about that. 

              i mean, if we're talking about being a grownup let's talk about how i'm not even writing this at home right now, because although i have been living in the same tiny apartment for the last six years i still haven't set up internet there. YOU READ THAT RIGHT. six years in the same place and i have yet to call AT&T to come set my shit up. six years of slow porn and endless mp3 downloads and i am still dragging my laptop to heartland and growling rabbit unshowered and in my pajamas three times a week to spend hours at a time writing jokes and eating room temperature quiche while trying to dodge the red-rimmed, sleep-deprived eyes of all of the hip millenials scowling at their macbooks through fragrant cappucino steam, lulled to indiffernce by the soothing sounds of cold war kids and . and also avoiding that awkward mating dance around the shared electrical outlets, which is quite possibly the least graceful human interaction on the planet. i hate playing coffeeshop twister with some bearded dude wearing beats headphones and a knit hat inside because i forgot to charge my little computer before i left the house, dislocating my joints and shit trying to reach around a motherfucker pretending he doesn't know he's blocking three perfectly good outlets.

              and let's also talk about how i didn't even have a piece of paper to write this list on so i stole the new york times style section from the communal newspaper table and scribbled it on that. and i didn't even make it up, i just compiled a bunch of random internet checklists. fucking hopeless.

              totally scientific adulthood necessity checklist:
              1 renter's insurance. had it, let it lapse. here's the thing, though, before you get all haughty and judgmental: i paid for that shit for eight years, FOR EIGHT REAL YEARS, before i absentmindedly closed the bank account the monthly payments were debited from without transferring it to my new one. eight real years without a fire, eight real years without a burglary, eight real years without my motherfucking ceiling collapsing on my head when all i was trying to do was watch matt lauer and eat some cold rice noodles. two months ago i'd be throwing my head back laughing gaily as i surveyed the new furniture my insurance settlement bought. instead i am left wondering where all my goddamn socks went. OH YEAH, THEY DROWNED. [ ]

              2 401k. okay, so i just got paid. and usually i toss my paystub in the trash without even looking at the shit so i can get on asos and buy some more shit i'll never wear, but this time i looked at it. and, so far this year, i have contributed $1200 to my retirement fund. well, who the fuck knew?! that's amazing. especially if i want to comfortably retire in a one-room tin house in liberia. HOLY FUCK WHAT AM I GOING TO DO WHEN I'M OLD. jesus, i better die while i can still afford an apartment for someone to find my hot, young corpse in. i don't know how long i've been contributing to this shit because i can't even tell you what i had for dinner yesterday, but let's say i've been setting aside $1200/yr for six years. that is $7200. i can't even buy a t-shirt from the jay-z collection at barney's with that shit. which is to say if i could even figure out HOW, because i have no idea what bank this money is in or whose dick i have to suck to get some out. what good is this money if i can't dip into it when the next generation iphone comes out? DOES THIS MONEY EVEN EXIST?! [ ]

              3 a signature drink. laura was talking a few minutes ago about how her wine refrigerator keeps her pinot grigio at the perfect temperature and i just sat there slack-jawed, mouth agape, because i don't know what the fuck grigio means. homie is, what, thirty years old? and already has a refrigerator specifically for wine?! WHAT THE FUCK AM I DOING WITH MYSELF. i mean, i have a freezer that is filled with outdated lean cuisines, but i don't think that's really a thing. at au cheval the other night mwongeli was talking to me and geno about the cocktail list and totally gave me the side eye when i ordered a drink fit for someone with the palate of a seven-year-old. i know how to order a whiskey that sounds cool, and i know enough about scotch and bourbon not to embarrass myself in case jack donaghy ever asks me out for happy hour, but let's be honest: the best drinks are the ones that look like ice cream and have umbrellas and shit in them. or they're the color of antifreeze and served in an actual hula girl's belly button. there is no better sound on earth than the slapping of a palm against the side of a blender as it tries to coax out the last frothy bits of your tropical typhoon colada breeze punch. [x]

              4 a tailor, a therapist, and a barber. two out of three ain't bad. unfortunately for my shattered nerves, the dude who lengthens my inseams and the woman who cuts my hair can't solve the nervous breakdown of which i am regularly on the precipice. man, i am stressed the fuck out. and anxious all the time. plus i'm crying more than usual, over dog food commercials and television singing competitions and little kids outside without mittens on. i really might be losing it. i made an appointment to have a bodyworker deal with this joint pain, i'ma start taking yoga from liz in january, and maybe by then my insurance will turn over and i can start talking to a professional about how to process my feelings in a healthy way but until then i'm taking the point here because HOW MANY PEOPLE DO YOU KNOW THAT HAVE AN ACTUAL TAILOR. [x]

              5 knows about good coffee and wine. i don't know shit about coffee. if you put a styrofoam cup of day-old gas station coffee in my left hand and the most expensive cup of freshly-made pour over intelligentsia coffee in my right i would not be able to tell the difference between the two. and wine is hella confusing. WHY ARE THERE SO MANY KINDS. and then there are, like, sub-genres and shit. the wine store is like the motherfucking matrix. i don't have time deciphering wine within wine, just give me a box of that cheap shit which i will pour into a decanter and no one will ever be the wiser. my friends are fucking dirtbags. i mean, these bitches do shots of old granddad. i'ma take a sommelier course and waste $50 on a bottle of wine for that hoe? NAW, BRO. [ ]

              6 legal representation. ask your dad if i have a lawyer. i was served with my first subpoena when i was 19, and the first thing i did was go straight to your childhood home with a copy of the surveillance tape and a shoebox full of receipts and asked that dude to get my ass the fuck out of trouble. it's steady work. i stay getting into hilarious jams. legal shit is boring. [x]

              7 a real suitcase. every time i go anywhere the only thing i have that is big enough to hold some unfolded yoga pants and a couple pairs of emergency underwear is this giant patagonia messenger bag i got from this outdoor person store around the corner from my job ten years ago. the fucking thing is not even meant for travel, but it's the only bag i own that clicks shut and has actual zippers. the bitches in the store were like, "what are you even doing in here?" with their eyes when i bought it, as it is meant for long athletic, granola-fueled hikes over mountainous terrain. and no, i am not going camping anytime in the near future aka ever in my whole life, but i needed a sturdy motherfucking bag so i bought it. and that bag has been to new york, california, denver, DC, and tunica, ms. and every time i've met my ride in the airport s/he has asked me if we needed to go get my actual suitcase from baggage claim. [ ]

              8 has some savings and an emergency fund. how much do you have to have in the bank for it to count as "savings?" like, if my rent check hasn't cleared yet and sprint is taking an extra-long time to process my most recent payment and there are still four figures in my account can we call that an "emergency fund?" i need to see proof that you single people with hourly jobs are actually putting money away and letting it earn interest or whatever. (i have no idea how that works.) every time i think i have an extra thousand bucks just lying around my tooth falls out or my ceiling falls in and there goes the down payment on that lion i've been wanting to buy. [ ]

              9 remembers birthdays. thank goodness for the internet. i am trying to limit my facebook activity because it is an overwhelming mindfuck, but the one thing it's good for is making me look like a caring human being on your birthday. i know what you're thinking. "don't be too proud of yourself. a real grownup would have a datebook with everyone's birthdays and anniversaries written in it so she could mail cards and gifts in advance. e-cards don't count as real acknowledgement." and to that i say: um, well. you might be right. i have absolutely no defense. SHIT. [ ]

              10 owns a basic set of tools. I HAVE ONE HAMMER. and it's not even mine, mel gave to to me when i told him i had tried to use a meat tenderizer to put nails into a dresser i was putting together a few years ago and then i just never gave it back. where do people learn how to build things? is that what children who aren't raised by functioning alcoholics do for fun on the weekends?! in my house, we slept until three in the afternoon and talked really quietly until dinnertime, when the advil kicked in and it was almost time for another cocktail. were the rest of you getting up early to construct treehouses and jungle gyms in your backyard? i have never had the desire to put anything together ever, and the only reason i even bothered with the dresser was because mark put it together for me and i broke a drawer and was too embarrassed to ask him to come over and fix it. this is why i will never own a house, because i don't ever want to know how a wrench works. i want to email my building manager with a list of the shit i broke in the morning and come home to fixed shit that night. I HAVE NO USE FOR PLIERS, SIR. [ ]

              11 goes to the grocery store and makes healthy, responsible choices. my last peapod order consisted mostly of seltzer water and gluten-free pie. [ ]

              12 keeps a well-stocked medicine cabinet. here's what i got if you get sick at my place: tons of imodium in case you have diarrhea, a shitload of prescriptions that won't help your situation in the least bit unless you develop acute crohn's disease minutes after you walk through the door and even then you probably need a doctor, and a large ziploc bag filled with assorted expired name brand cold medicines, because i am stupid enough to believe that generics don't work as well. seriously, i have so much old mucinex. but nothing for a sore throat. or a toothache. i don't have any antacids. no neosporin, nothing for a regular headache, and half a box of those pills that turn your pee orange if you have a UTI that i bought in 2006. i have a giant bottle of potassium supplements but no visine, a refrigerator full of fancy probiotics but no nyquil. i have three economy-sized bottles of fish oil, but if you have a runny nose when you come over to watch american horror story i would have to give you a roll of toilet paper. at least it's extra soft. [ ]

              13 has funeral shoes. and if you died from a horrible lung infection right now because i can't keep not-expired cough syrup around, i would be stuck wearing black bootcut yoga pants, these black puffy north face boots i have to put an insole in because they're basically flat inside and destroy my fucking knees, and my winter coat to your goddamned funeral. i'm pretty sure i have some black dress pants somewhere and the kind of sheer black shirts you can't wear out during the day otherwise people will be able to count your multiple skin folds with stunning accuracy, but that shit is not appropriate. are funerals the kind of thing you can send a gift card to six months after you missed it? i'm asking for a friend. one who wears flip flops and gym shoes all the time. [ ]

              total score: infant, essentially.
              click here. buy my book. i need a new bed.